This last week has been an interesting for the whale watching community everywhere. On the morning of 25th September a Beluga Whale was spotted in the Thames Estuary just outside of London and the country has been somewhat gripped by his plight. There’s been concern for his well being ranging from monitoring his swimming patterns to ensure he doesn’t end up too distressed and to ensure that well-meaning people hoping to catch a glimpse of him don’t venture on to the water to further stress him as he navigates the unfamiliar environment.
As the Summer draws to a close and Fall sets in round Johnston Strait the team at OrcaLab have busy monitoring the Northern Resident groups as they passed through the area. We’ve just had the latest update from them, with some beautiful video shot by one of their Summer staff.
This June we celebrate the 12th annual Orca Awareness Month! Whilst our adoptee is a Northen Resident Orca, and the population is beginning to flourish, Orca Month aims to raise awareness of the plight of the endangered Southern Resident orca population. The Southern Resident population now numbers only 39 Orcas, due in part to the diminishing Salmon population on which this critically endangered orca population depends. If you’d like to learn more about Orca Awareness Month, visit their website!
If you’ve been following us for a little while, you’ll know that this year [dirty.pretty] adopted an Orca named Holly using your group join fees. April is a quiet month for the team at Orclab and in their update they decided to share a little bit of history about each of the adoption Orcas that the team observe in Johnstone Strait.
On 24th April, we officially opened the Ash Falls extension and we are so happy that you’ve been enjoying the new space!
Ash Falls has been home of dirty.pretty for a very long time; it’s been through various metamorphoses and taken lots of forms. In June ’17, Ash Falls was opened to the public and swiftly added to the photogenic location category in the Second Life Destination Guide. But whilst beautiful, we felt that Ash Falls hadn’t quite found its’ purpose in its’ newest form.
We’ve had our update from OrcaLab, and they had a pretty surprising visitor to Johnstone Strait during February! For the first time in 30 years the team were visited by a Sperm Whale. The researchers at OrcaLab have named him Yukusam, and they took a trip out on their boats to take a closer look. The last recorded sighting of a Sperm Whale in the Strait was in 1984 so the team are really happy to be able to observe Yukusam and will be sending us updates on him too.
In early January, Orcalab report having finally heard A5 pod’s calls on their underwater recordings. And, on 10th January again, their calls were heard from Johnstone Straight and Orcalab’s researchers contacted the Canadian Fisheries department. They were finally able to locate Holly and her family, along with other A5 pod orcas, at the Ecological Reserve at Robson Bight.
Many of you that have stopped by to visit Erebos Harbor will have noticed our little Orca pod who live in the waters off the North West coast line! Just as our environments at Ash Falls and Erebos Harbor are inspired by the rugged topography, rocky ashen beaches and lush greenery of the stunning Pacific Northwest; our killer whales are inspired by the Northern Resident Orca community that live off of the coast of British Columbia.